Diabetes: Telemedicine

Department of Health and Social Care written question – answered on 19th March 2019.

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Photo of Steve Double Steve Double Conservative, St Austell and Newquay

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what long term digital support his Department is providing for (a) people who are in remission from and (b) those at highest risk of type 2 diabetes.

Photo of Steve Brine Steve Brine The Parliamentary Under-Secretary for Health and Social Care

The NHS Long Term Plan published on 7 January 2019 outlines commitments to support individuals with type 2 diabetes through a number of digital and web-based approaches.

This includes:

- Plans to fund a doubling of the NHS Diabetes Prevention Programme over the next five years, including a new digital option to widen patient choice and target inequality;

- Plans to support people who are newly diagnosed to manage their own health by further expanding provision of structured education and digital self-management support tools, including expanding access to HeLP Diabetes an online self-management tool for those with type 2 diabetes.

- Work with the wider National Health Service, the voluntary sector, developers, and individuals in creating a range of apps to support particular conditions; and

- People newly diagnosed with diabetes will be supported through expanded pilots for digital structured education.

Due to a limited evidence base for digital approaches, NHS England has been running a large scale real world evaluation of digital interventions. They have been working with five digital providers and currently over 4,000 people have registered to use these services. The evidence indicates positive rates of engagement, encouraging weight loss, and suggests a strong uptake amongst the working age population. The formal evaluation will be complete at the start of 2020, and if positive, will justify wide-scale roll-out of digital delivery, beyond the 20,000 per annum currently planned.

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